Orange Flowers

For the month of October Cee over at Cee’s Photography has been posting orange flowers for her Flower of the Day. I have been meaning to join in but haven’t posted an orange flower a day. I decided to just do one post with all the orange flowers I have in my folders.

Enjoy the orange flowers

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Geoffs Garden

My last post, can be viewed here, I mentioned my elderly neighbour Geoff had died. He was a good friend who often came for a cuppa on the verandah on a Sunday to tell of his latest addition to his chooks or what was happening in his garden or have a whinge about his “situation” (I am not going into that as it is too personal and also makes me too angry). He often told of his life, which was very often repeated, where he worked and of his family. One of the amazing coincidences was that we both went to the same High School, although he was there around 21 years before me. He was a great friend to me. Geoff was a Boilermaker by trade and his skills in doing things that i had no idea about, helped my development as a “man of the land”. I helped him in showing him the ways of nature and how the place we live in was very special, possibly developing him as a “bushboy”

There are many a story from the old days but in this I am relating the story of Geoff the gardener whose plants I have in my garden. When Geoff was to go into aged care as he really needed to have the caring he needed, he said to me “come and get as many plants and cuttings as you want” although his family (a cousin and niece as he never married or had any female relationships) did frown upon my doing so.

One of the things he said was that if he died he was leaving me his chooks in his will. Just before he left he asked me to come and get his chooks. A couple are still here, see this link, and are another reminder of Geoff.

Some of the plants I did go to Geoffs’ place and get are flowering and others are well and healthy.

This is his garden. I never took my camera to his place but I did a couple of times. So please enjoy Geoffs Garden.

This is the way into Geoffs place. The power lines to the left are a clearing and the main garden is on the right
geoffs garden_driveway_named_oct 2017
The sign at the front. Geoff said it meant the Gates of Heaven but if my Italian is correct it means Sky Harbour. I didn’t have the heart to tell him it should have been Porte del Cielogeoffs garden_property name_named_oct 2017
This is the only small piece of his garden that I have. The Hippeastrums that year were splendid.geoffs garden_view_named_oct 2017

Geoff  had some Australian native plants in his garden. The Candle Banksia was one my favourites
geoffs garden_candle banksia_named_oct 2017

There were some Grevilleas but not as many as I have.
geoffs garden_grevillea_named_oct 2017

He had a lot of birds at his place as well. Brown Honeyeaters enjoyed his Grevilleas.
geoffs garden_grevillea_brown honeyeater_named_oct 2017

One thing he enjoyed was a huge dish he filled with Sunflower seed, much to my displeasure. I bought him a wild bird mix as it was healthier for the birds but he persisted with his sunflower seeds. His verandah was always overflowing with sunflower seed husks that the Rainbow Lorikeets, King Parrots and other birds came to his place and feed. The King Parrots still hang around my place but the number of Rainbow Lorikeets has dropped. I don’t have any photos of his big bowl bird feeder.

OK. Back to his garden. These are a selection of his day Lilies. He loved the Port Wine Lily best. I hope I have one of these to remember him by.
geoffs garden_day lily01_named_oct 2017

If you look in the background, you can see some of his chooks as well.
geoffs garden_day lily03_named_oct 2017

It was a bit of pot luck in getting some of the day lilies as he wasn’t very well and couldn’t remember which plant was which until it flowered. The Yellow Day Lily was a lovely splash of yellow in his garden.
geoffs garden_day lily02_named_oct 2017

The pink variety was stunning to come across wandering about Geoffs Garden.
geoffs garden_day lily04_named_oct 2017

I have had a number of the Leopard Lilies in my garden. One of the first plants he gave me.
geoffs garden_leopard lily_named_oct 2017

At the back of his house he built a garden complete with rocks he made from concrete. After a few years you couldn’t tell that they weren’t real bush rocks. Among these “rocks” Geoff planted Golden Lycras. When they flowered the back garden was a blaze with yellow. I have so many around my garden as he was always lifting the bulbs and giving them away.
geoffs garden_golden lycras_named_oct 2017

Here is the Iris which has been on a number of my posts but not from this angle.
geoffs garden_iris_top_named_oct 2017

The Iris with bonus Stingless Native Bees who loved the Iris
geoffs garden_iris_bees_named_oct 2017

Geoff had a nice selection of Gerberas. This one was a rare Gerbera he had.
geoffs garden_gerbera apricot_named_oct 2017

The pink Gerbera really stood out in the garden.
geoffs garden_gerbera pink_named_oct 2017

Geoffs favourite flower probably was Hippeastrums. His garden was filled with all colours of Hippeastrums. It is a pity I don’t have a full record of these wonderful flowers.
geoffs garden_hippeastrum03_named_oct 2017

This Hippeastrum is currently blooming in the pot that I collected from Geoffs Garden
geoffs garden_hippeastrum01_named_oct 2017

The orange Hippeastrum was unusual.
geoffs garden_hippeastrum05_named_oct 2017

Another stunning colour
geoffs garden_hippeastrum06_named_oct 2017

This is one of my favourites.
geoffs garden_hippeastrum04_named_oct 2017

The almost white Hippeastrum is another rare one. Geoff also had a green Hippeastrum but I couldn’t remember which part of his garden the flower was in.
geoffs garden_hippeastrum02_named_oct 2017

Geoff loved the fragrance of Frangipannis.
geoffs garden_frangipani_white_named_oct 2017

This Frangipanni greeted you as you came up the driveway to the house.
geoffs garden_frangipani_apricot_named_oct 2017
Finally, here is Geoff just a short while before he had to go into care. He was a crusty old coot but a good friend.

Good bye mate

geoff_named_oct 2017

This is September: the other bits

Well here is the second installment of This is September. Here is an assortment of stuff but mainly nature.

First off I’d like to let you know my sad news. My elderly neighbour and good friend Geoff, the bloke who gave me this beautiful Iris, died earlier this week. I have so many plants from his wonderful garden, perhaps a future blog, that I will always have good memories especially when the plants flower and spread sunshine to my garden.
iris_geoffs_named_home_sept 2017

I might as well stay on the flowers that managed to bloom despite the lack of rain. Orange Trumpet flowers hang from the shed.
orange trumpet flower_named_home_sept 2017

The Bromiliad flowers are most unusual
bromiliad flower_named_home_sept 2017

The Pansys battled on with a watering every now and then.
pansy_yellow_named_binna burra_sept 2017

I like the lion face in this Pansy
pansy_orange_named_binna burra_sept 2017

The Rose Geraniums flowered looking so spectacular dotted through the garden
rose geranium_named_home_sept 2017

Most of the flowers also had other things happening too. Can you find the insect on the Westringia? Hint it’s a bee
westringia_named_home-sept 2017

The butterflies liked resting on the Westringia. Not sure if this is a Grass Dart or a Skipper
grass dart or skipper_named_home_sept 2017

Stingless Native Bees were a buzz about the Orange Trumpet flowers.
orange trumpet flower_stingless native bees_named_home_sept 2017

Other bees likes to get among the Grevilleas
bee_honey gem_named_home_sept 2017

The Wisteria came out to bloom for a few weeks. Wanderer Butterflies were attracted to the flowers perfume.
wanderer butterfly_wisteria_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Another sign of Spring is Orchard Swallowtails in the garden.
orchard swallowtail butterfly01_named_binna burra_sept 2017

One of the biggest butterflies that come around the garden.
orchard swallowtail butterfly02_side_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Some moths are hard to find when they sit on the ground
moth hidden_named_home_august 2017

Other butterflies are rather small like this Barred Skipper who didn’t mind resting on a leaf
barred skipper_named_home_sept 2017

Do you remember the Assassin Bug photo? Here is the full photo
assasin bug_bananas_named_home_sept 2017

Come warmer weather, spider webs appear. The St Andrews Cross Spider didn’t quite get the “this is what a cross looks like” memo
st andrews cross spider_web_named_home_sept 2017

I din’t think he cares very much
st andrews cross spider_named_home_sept 2017

Insects are everywhere. Some like to see what you are doing on the computer
insect on screen_named_home_sept 2017

Just a fly sitting on a leaf
fly_named_binna burra_sept 2017

An ant scurried away when it saw the camera
ant_pentas_named_home_sept 2017

A Common Yellow Butterfly shows the birds how to hide among the leaves
common yellow butterfly_named_home_sept 2017

Some leaves look  wonderful. The colours the White Fig leaves turn merge so well
leaf_fig_named_home_sept 2017

The sunlight on the Bottlebrush leaf drew my attention. This is without the photo bombing bee
bottlebrush_leaf_colour_named_home_sept 2017

The Bloodwood Tree nuts litter the forest floor
bloodwood nuts_named_home_sept 2017

On a walk we came across a Spotted Gum with interesting bark patterns and lumps. What can you see?
tree bumps_named_home_sept 2017

The Ironbark looked like it had a claw emerging down its trunk.
tree claw_named_home_sept 2017

Can you see a cat?
tree cat_named_home_sept 2017

We saw a bear…can you?
tree bear_named_home_sept 2017

The Silk Tree pods are like orange velvet in the tree tops
silk tree pod_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Sometimes the pods drop with their seeds intact
silk tree pod_seeds_named_binna burra_sept 2017

The Agave looked lovely in the morning sun
agave_pot_named_home_sept 2017

The Skink hung on to the bricks as it surveyed the scene on the church in Grafton
skink_named_grafton_sept 2017

The Joeys are now too big to fit in the pouch any more
red necked wallaby_joey_named_home_sept 2017
The Spring sunsets have been amazingsunset01_named_binna burra_sept 2017

The sun is almost gone so it’s time to say see ya later.
sunset02_named_binna burra_sept 2017

This is September: The birds

G’day,
September, the first month of Spring but still no rain. The last drop of rain I have had was 6mls on the 6th July. Good news is there was 21mls over the last weekend. The dry Winter and September didn’t  stop the Grevillieas from flowering. I didn’t include many Grevilleas in this or the next blog. You can see them here from a previous blog. But I digress. This part of This is September is just the birds. The next blog is everything else as I looked at the number of photos and there are too many for one blog. I didn’t want your cuppa to get cold scrolling through or fall asleep before the end.

Ready……..lets get going.

The first lot are birds who are not very good at hiding, although some were just sheltering from the heat of the day probably.

The Australian Raven gave the game away by incessantly calling.
australian raven_hiding_named_grafton_sept 2017

The Noisy Friarbird was in the Sweet Pittosporum
noisy friarbird_hiding_named_home_sept 2017

The Little Friarbird was hiding behind the Mago
little friarbird_looking_named_home_sept 2017

The Striated Thornbill was hiding in the Hibiscus
striated thornbill_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Can you spot the White-throated Treecreeper?
white throated tree creeper_hiding_named_home_sept 2017

The Figbird was trying to be inconspicuous
fig bird_named_home_sept 2017

Little Friarbirds don’t hide very well do they?
little friarbird_hiding_named_home_sept 2017

I love seeing the Variegated Fairy Wrens hopping through the garden. They usually come in small flocks looking among the bushes and flowers for insects or heading to the birdbath.
The females are hard to see aren’t they?
variegated fairy wren_female_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Whereas the males really stand out
variegated fairy wren_males_named_binna burra_sept 2017

They are so cute when they sit together
variegated fairy wren_male_female_named_binna burra_sept 2017

As the weather has been very warm, almost Summer temperatures, the bird bath was the place to be. The Little Friarbird came for a drink.
little friarbird_birdbath01_named_home_sept 2017

Bottoms up
little friarbird_drinking_birdbath_named_home_sept 2017

Looking about before having another drink
little friarbird_birdbath_named_home_sept 2017

A Spangled Drongo seemed to have a gargle
spangled drongo_birdbath_named_home_sept 2017

While a White-throated Treecreeper jumped in and splashed about
white throated treecreeper_birdbath_splash_named_home-sept 2017

Sometimes you can emerge from the birdbath looking a bit bedraggled like this White-throated Honeyeater
white throated honeyeater_birdbath_named_home_sept 2017

Eastern Whipbirds love the birdbath
whipbird01_in birdbath_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Almost ready for another dip
whipbird02_birdbath_named_binna burra_sept 2017

Lewins Honeyeaters like the mosaics of this birdbath
lewins honeyeater_named_binna burra_sept 2017
Of course there are birds who live in the water. Darters enjoy a swim
darter_named_grafton_sept 2017
While other birds prefer to be in the trees. Blue-faced Honeyeaters enjoy lunch
blue faced honeyeater_named_home_sept 2017

blue faced honeyeater01_named_home_sept 2017

Figbirds wonder what other birds are doing
figbird_looking_named_home_sept 2017

Yellow-faced Honeyeaters like sitting on sticks
yellow faced honeyeater_named_home_sept 2017

A regular Spring visitor is the Rufous Whistler who sing their little hearts out during the day
rufous whistler_named_home_sept 2017

The Square-tailed Kites have come back to their nest from last year to raise more chicks
square tailed kite_nest_named_home_sept 2017

Other birds don’t mind a stroll about. A Grey-shrike Thrush hopped about the leaf litter
grey shrike thrush_named_binna burra_sept 2017

On their regular patrol around the garden, the Wonga Pigeons stopped for a drink.
wongas_named_binna burra_sept 2017

A Common Bronzewing takes a walk along the road
common bronzewing_named_home_sept 2017

I like the first signs of Spring when the Rufous Whistler and the Spangled Drongos arrive at my place. Did you have a favourite bird?

 

Why it takes me ages to do stuff

I often go outside to do things around the house such as splitting firewood, or a bit of gardening, work on the car for instance. Sometimes I get asked “Where have you been? You’ve been gone for ages and lunch/dinner is ready.” Or “What has taken you so long? You were just going to split a wheelbarrow of firewood.”

Well, you see I have some helpers. Oh, so you have helpers I hear you say. So it shouldn’t take you very long to do stuff if there are helpers!!!

My helpers are always there whenever I go outside, ready to be with me to see what they can do to make my jobs a lot easier. Yes, everywhere I go they always tag along to make sure I do a good job.

This is how they help in the garden.
chooks_garden_named_home_2017

Just so you know I had put a small plant in the garden right there.
chooks_garden_looking_named_home_2017

“Did you say something?” she said.
chooks_garden_scratching_named_home_2017

At the chopping block. I am always telling them to watch out as a block of wood flies off the block.
chooks1_block_looking_named_home_2017

“Hey. Got any white ants or bugs up here?” If I stop to get another block to split, there is always a chook up there!
chooks_block_looking_named_home_2017

Now you would think that working on the car, compressor going, the sound of air tools and perhaps a bit of language from me, would be not the place to be wouldn’t you?
chooks_under car_named_home_2017

“I think I’ll settle in here for a while.”
chook_under car_named_home_2017

I love my chooks and don’t really mind with their “help”……most of the time.

 

Square in September #3

I promised Lisa from A Day In The Life  that I would post a White Hydrangea for Beckys A Life of a 40 Something  Square in September flower challenge.

Sorry Becky, I have cheated a little as I haven’t posted one photo.

The White Hydrangea flower ball. A very early bloom from a young plant so it’s not as big as I hope the flowers will one day become.
170920_blog challenge_square in september_white hydrangea

Ever looked behind a Hydrangea? Almost reminds me of the Segrada Familia photos I posted a while ago.
170920_blog challenge_square in september_white hydrangea_behind

The centers of the individual flower have a beauty all of their own.
170920_blog challenge_square in september_white hydrangea_centre

Grevilleas in my garden

This blog was inspired by Rebel Guy and Rebel Girl’s Twenty Minutes in the Garden.

I took a walk around as the Grevilleas are flowering at the moment. I looked for the plant tags on some of the older ones that have been in the garden for ages as I couldn’t remember all their names. I have quite a number of Grevilleas now as the birds and bees love the nectar in the flowers.
This is my favourite Grevillea in the garden, the Honey Gem. The flowers can almost drip with nectar. The birds just love the flowers. See an old post One Day at the Grevilleagrevillea_honey gem01_named_home_august 2017

Moonlight is a new Grevillea and this is the first flower
grevillea_moonglow_named_home_august 2017

I think this Grevillea is called Pink Ice
grevillea_pink_named_home_august 2017

Poor Jingle Bells. The lack of rain and my forgetfulness in watering has its flowers almost spent. Hopefully after a couple of weeks of watering there may be new flowers.
grevillea_buddy_named_home_august 2017

Lemon Daze is another new plant I was given in exchange for some work at the same time as Jingle Bells. Still only small it has tiny flowers compared to other Grevillea in the garden.
grevillea_yellow daze_named_home_august 2017

Honey Barbara is a rescue plant from a nursery. It was pot bound and didn’t look very healthy. I bit of love and now the Grevillea has a number of flowers and is almost as tall as me.
grevillea_rust_named_home_august 2017

See how the flowers form on Honey Barbara.
grevillea_rust_with buds_named_home_august 2017

I can’t remember the name of this Grevillea. Another plant that needed some TLC. The first flowers are just about to burst forth. It has about 4 flower spikes waiting to open from their hairy shelter.
grevillea_rust_buds_named_home_august 2017

The Yamba Sunshine has great yellow flowers that the birds and insects enjoy.
grevillea_yellow_named_home_august 2017

The bees just love it.
grevillea_yellow_bee_named_home_august 2017

A very old original Grevillea. A lot of the cultivars have this as their root stock as it is very hardy. Planted on the very edge of the garden it survives on rainfall.
grevillea_red_named_home_august 2017

The Blue-faced Honeyeaters are a constant visitor to have a snack.
grevillea_red_blue faced honeyeater_named_home_august 2017

This is what happens when the birds fight over the Grevillea

In this video, The Friarbird is far more vocal and the Blue-faced Honeyeater is nonplussed

The last video was shot last year at the end of August so you see the same old battles for control of the garden are on going.

This is August

I do seem to have a lot of favourite photos from August. I have done quite a hard cull. I hope you are able to get through all of this blog. It was a busier than usual month. The rain hasn’t come and the place is dry now. It is a pity the dam I use for around the garden leaked as it was full in Autumn and that would normally have seen me through Winter until the Spring storms arrive.  Being so dry the number of birds are reduced but I have maintained the water points around the garden for the birds and animals. I almost feel like a bad parent, selecting the plants to water and hoping the others will hang in there until I start the pump and give the garden a good soaking.

Enough of the sob story and let’s get started with the things I found in August.

I just love the colour of this leaf.
leaf_named_home_august 2017

Late one afternoon while I was searching for a new log to cut firewood, I went down to the water hole. This water hole has never dried even in some of the severe droughts in the 1990’s and 2000’s. Camera settings 1/320 F6.5 ISO 800
pool_afternoon_named_home_august 2017

Driving about the property, mainly gathering firewood and pulling lantana out, I often come across a family of White-winged Choughs as they patrol the bush, walking about looking under leaves and bark for insects. It was good to see that this family group has grown from five to seven.
white winged chough_named_home_august 2017

The wily Currawong was sitting in the Bottlebrush waiting for an unsuspecting small Honeyeater to drop in for a meal.
currawong_named_home_august 2017

At the small paddock dam, in reality a wetland now, the Peaceful Dove was walking down the slope heading for a drink.
peaceful dove_named_home_august 2017

In one of the water points I have placed a stick so if a bird falls into the old drum, they have something to grab onto and get out. The Yellow-faced Honeyeaters like sitting on the stick after having a drink or plopping in the water for a bath.
yellow faced honeyeaters_named_home_august 2017

The main sounds that were echoing through the bush in August were the calls of the Yellow-faced Honeyeaters. They loved feasting on the Bottlebrushes.
brown honeyeater_named_home_august 2017

The Black-faced Cuckoo Shrike was surveying the scene at Modenville.
black faced cuckoo shrike_named_modanville_august 2017

One morning the Bowerbird was eating the grass for breakfast. It had quite a number of beak-fulls before it flew off.
satin bower bird female_named_home_august 2017

The Bowerbird looked stunning in the afternoon light.
satin bower bird_female_named_home_august 2017

I love having King Parrots around. Their whistle resounds through the bush.
king parrot01_named_home_august 2017

A Restless Flycatcher dropped in for an afternoon.
restless flycatcher_named_home_august 2017

The Superb Fairy Wrens were bustling about the garden at Modenville hardly sitting long enough for a photo.
superb fairy wren_named_modanville_august 2017

The little Variegated Fairy Wren was very busy with his flock of females as they explored the garden at Binna Burra.
variegated fairy wren_named_binna burra_august 2017

I wondered what had happened to my beautiful blooms on my Cyclamen and then I saw the culprit. It is almost like the caterpillar has a straw in its mouth.
caterpillar_cyclamen_named_home_august 2017

I found this tiny “house” that an insect has constructed on the bark of a block of firewood I had cut. I have bought it home and hope to see what come out of this beautifully constructed nest.
insect nest_named_home_august 2017

I found this beetle marching with purpose along a log.beetle_orange black_named_home_august 2017

The Common Jezebals have been flying about the bush and garden for a few weeks. When they fly they have an intense stroboscopic pattern flashing of black and white. When the wings are flat you can see the predominately white side of the wings.
common jezabel_close_named_home_august 2017

I love it when there is an unexpected spider on a flower or seed head as well as small grasshoppers and ants. The seed head is about the size of a 20 cent piece.
grass flower spike_spider_named_home_august 2017

This is the rest of the spike
grass flower spike_named_home_august 2017

There is a lot of native flowers popping up this August. It was unseasonably very warm. A lovely circle of yellow flowers about the size of a 10 cent piece.
native flower_yellow_named_home_august 2017

I called this flower a Buttercup but it’s probably not. The leaves are similar to Oxalis.
native flower_yellow_buttercup_named_home_august 2017

Look how hairy the leaves are and the flower has a lovely reddish brown centre.
native flower_yellow hairy leaves_named_home_august 2017

The Egg and Bacon plant is growing on the top of the dam wall. The flowers are beautiful and yes the leaves are spiky. A great place for small birds to escape into.
egg and bacon flower_named_home_august 2017

I call this vine a Native Wisteria. It is also called False Sarsaparilla and a few other names. It looks lovely when the vine entwines with a wattle threading purple among the wattle flowers.
native wisteria01_named_home_august 2017

Scattered throughout the bush these little star shaped flowers are easy to miss as they are about ten millimeters across.
native flower_purple_named_home_august 2017

The Bottlebrush flower is photo-bombed by a Stingless Native Bee.
grevillea_red_bee_named_home_august 2017

This Grevillea flower is called Lemon Daze.
grevillea_yellow daze_named_home_august 2017

Isn’t the inside of this flower interesting?
flower_pink_named_binna burra_august 2017

Love the colour of these flowers.
pink flower_named_binna burra_august 2017

Pansys. Who doesn’t love smiling Pansy faces. The colours are spectacular.
pansey_yellow_named_binna burra_august 2017

The camera can’t catch the deep purple of these Pansys
pansey purple_named_binna burra_august 2017

One August afternoon the sunset was spectacular.
sunset01_named_binna burra_august 2017

I love the effect of the hills and trees on the horizon.
sunset_close_named_binna burra_august 2017

One of my Canon Powershot camera setting is called “Creative”. It takes a number of photos with different setting. This one made the sun look explosive.
sunset_changed_named_binna burra_august 2017

Looks like the sun has set so goodbye and thanks for stopping by.